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BANKING

Goldenwest Credit Union, Ogden, has promoted Tonya Froerer to senior vice president of mortgage services. She is responsible for leading the 40-person mortgage services team. Froerer has spent 20 years at Goldenwest in various roles. In 2006, she took the leadership role at the Roy office when she was named branch manager. Other positions include assistant vice president starting in 2012 and vice president in 2015. In 2018, she was named vice president of mortgages services across the organization.

CONTESTS

• The top 20 teams have been announced in the 2020 Utah Entrepreneur Challenge, a college business model competition. The student startup teams advance to the final round of the statewide competition. Teams are competing for $100,000 in cash and prizes, including a $40,000 grand prize. The next step will be online video voting, which is open to the public March 16-27. The winners will be determined at the final awards event on March 28. The competition is managed by the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, a division of the David Eccles School of Business at the University of Utah. The top teams are (alphabetically) Auxilium Automation, Brigham Young University; BidMyCrib, Utah Valley University; Concord Research Group, Westminster College; ControlAlt, BYU; Decheque, University of Utah; Denali Drone Services, Weber State University; Disani Global Health, UofU; Gaia Technologies, UofU; Harmony, Salt Lake Community College; Hops and Hounds, Westminster; My School Dance, UofU; PaddedSoul, Dixie State University; Parq, UofU; Piing Watch, BYU; Pyramid Security, Utah State University; Reese & Co., Southern Utah University; Sawtooth, UofU; The Girls Co., BYU; and The Guitar Hacks, Snow College; Vitapul, UofU.

 

• The application deadline is May 1 for a business model competition with $25,000 in prizes. A partnership between the Governor’s Office of Economic Development and the Lassonde Entrepreneur Institute, the speed pitch competition is open to all Utah-based startups that meet certain criteria. After a qualification round at the institute, finalists will pitch to a panel of experts and summit audience members June 18 at the Utah Economic Summit in Salt Lake City. Participating startup companies must be headquartered with the state of Utah. The company’s cumulative revenue, debt, grant or third-party financing must not have topped $1 million before May 1. Rules and exceptions are up to the discretion of the event organizing committee. Details are available by contacting lassonde@utah.edu.

 

• The application deadline is March 6 at 11:59 p.m. for the RevRoad annual entrepreneur competition. RevRoad, Provo, will host the competition March 21 at 8:30 a.m., allowing entrepreneurs to pitch in front of some of Utah’s top business leaders and investors. Each participant must complete an application process as well as two rounds of live pitches for a panel of 18 judges, gathered from business and university leaders. Three finalists will be selected. The champion will receive $10,000. Second- and third-place finishers will receive $2,500 and $1,000, respectively. The Fan Favorite will receive $1,000. The event is free and open to the public and will be at 1555 N. Freedom Blvd., Provo.

CORPORATE

Lipocine Inc., a Salt Lake City-based clinical-stage biopharmaceutical company focused on metabolic and endocrine disorders, has closed on a registered direct offering of more than 10 million Class A units, each consisting of one share of its common stock and one-half of a common warrant to purchase one share of its common stock, at a price of 59.5 cents per Class A unit. Total gross proceeds to the company is about $6 million, before deducting placement agent fees and other estimated offering expenses. The Company intends to use the net proceeds from the offering for working capital and general corporate purposes. Roth Capital Partners acted as sole agent for the offering.

DIRECT SALES

Kristine F. Hughes, co-founder and board member of Nature’s Sunshine Products, Lehi, died Feb. 23 at the age of 81. For nearly 48 years, she helped revolutionize the herbal and natural wellness industry and gave rise to the modern supplement industry. With her husband and family, she began encapsulating herbs and selling them to health food stores, the first step toward a building a company that has spread to more than 40 countries worldwide. She served as an officer in the company since 1980, served as CEO from 1996-97 and served in various capacities as a member of the board of directors for 35 years, including chairperson from 1984-2012 and vice chairperson from 2013-19.

INVESTMENTS

Lendio, a Lehi-based marketplace for small-business loans, has announced it has secured $55 million in capital, including $31 million in equity led by Mercato Partners’ Traverse Fund and a $24 million debt facility from Signature Bank. The equity round was oversubscribed by existing investors, including Napier Park Financial PartnersComcast Ventures, Blumberg Capital, Stereo Capital and Runa Capital. The company said the funding will enable it to increase the scope and precision of its loan marketplace while expanding new bookkeeping and lender services functions.

 

Homie, a Salt Lake City-based real estate technology company, has completed its $23 million Series B equity round of financing. The funds will be used to expand to new market and continue the build-out of its end-to-end home buying and selling platform. The company currently operates in Utah and Arizona with plans to expand into three new markets in 2020.

NONPROFITS

• The board of trustees of The Road Home, a nonprofit provider of emergency shelter, housing and other homeless services in Salt Lake County, has selected Michelle Flynn as executive director. Flynn has served as The Road Home’s interim executive director. She has 30 years of local, state and national experience in homelessness, human services, affordable housing and community development initiatives. She served as The Road Home’s associate executive director for the past 15 years of her 25-year history with the organization.

PHILANTHROPY

Mountain America Credit Union recently donated $17,000 to the American Red Cross through the three-point shot program at Brigham Young University. The credit union donated $50 for every three-point shot made by BYU men’s basketball this season. The credit union also donated $500 for each field goal made by BYU football during the 2019 season, or $10,500, for a total donation of $27,500.   

 

Mountain America Credit Union and the Utah Jazz have announced that The Adoption Exchange is the season’s fourth recipient of “Pass it Along,” a program featuring fan-nominated opportunities that rewards five local charitable organizations with $5,000 each. With the donation, “"Pass It Along” has contributed $175,000 to local nonprofits since its inception in 2013. The Utah office of The Adoption Exchange is dedicated to helping waiting children in Utah find safe, loving and permanent homes. The agency also assists adoptive families by providing resource information and referrals, support, advocacy and education.

REAL ESTATE

Urban Utah Homes and Estates, a hyperlocal boutique real estate brokerage in Salt Lake City, is moving to The Gateway, across the street from the Dakota Building. Babs De Lay, principal broker/owner, has had an office at the Dakota Building since 2001 and moved to a space three times the original size about a decade ago. The office had formerly been a Ruby Tuesday’s restaurant during the 2002 Olympics but had sat vacant for years before De Lay purchased the 6,000-square-foot space next door to the former office. De Lay kept the original restaurant bar, which sat 30 people for clients and nonprofits to use as a meeting and party space offered at no charge.

RECOGNITIONS

ChamberWest recently announced its list of winners at its 2020 Annual Awards Gala. Small Business of the Year is TalentTeam. The Best Place to Work is Maxtec. Business of the Year is Concentrix. Volunteer of the Year is Ben Horsley.

 

England Logistics, a Salt Lake City-based freight brokerage firm, has been recognized as a “Training Top 125” recipient for 2020 by Training magazine. The annual award identifies organizations that excel in employee training and development. England Logistics is ranked No. 68 and has made the list for the third consecutive year. England Logistics provides training programs ranging from division-specific coaching to overall professional growth.

 

Alpha Wealth Funds, a Park City-based investment advisory firm, has two of its three hedge funds included in the list of the top 10-performing hedge funds in the world in 2019 by BarclayHedge, a leading independent alternative database vendor. The Insiders Fund was named the fourth-best-performing hedge fund in the long-short equity category. Theta Investments was named the ninth-best-performing fund in the options category.

 

Nav, a service offering financing to business owners and with offices in Salt Lake City and Silicon Valley, has named Philip Klayman, founder of Three Tree Coffee, as the grand prize winner of its quarterly Small Business Grant. The $10,000 grant will be used to automate the company’s packing process and unlock new growth opportunities. Three Tree Coffee opened in Statesboro, Georgia, in 2015.

RETAIL

Overstock.com Inc., Salt Lake City, has appointed Joel Weight as chief technology officer for its retail shopping site. Weight is a nine-year veteran of Overstock’s family of companies, most recently serving as chief operations officer at Medici Ventures, Overstock’s wholly owned subsidiary and blockchain accelerator. He previously was chief technology officer at Medici Ventures. He also worked at Access Development, SunGard Higher Education and eXegeSys. He received his bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of Utah.

SERVICES

Insperity Inc., a Texas-based provider of human resources and business performance solutions, has opened district office with sales and service capabilities at 6510 S. Millrock Drive, Suite 200, Holladay, and named Corbitt Mizell as district manager. Mizell will be responsible for helping to oversee area sales efforts. He has more than 20 years of sales and management experience. Prior to joining Insperity, he served as an area sales manager for a telecommunications company. Mizell’s education includes a bachelor’s degree in management from Brigham Young University.

TECHNOLOGY/LIFE SCIENCES

Space Dynamics Laboratory, North Logan, has appointed Liz Young to its board of directors. Young has served as a member of SDL’s guidance council since 2014 and will continue to serve in that capacity. Young is a consultant within the space and intelligence industry and advises a variety of organizations on system engineering and program management,  including NASA’s Artemis program. In 2011, Young retired at the rank of rear admiral from the U.S. Navy, where she served for 20 years at the National Reconnaissance Office. She led the NRO’s Systems Engineering Directorate and was credited with helping the NRO through a historic six satellite launches in less than a year. Young also served as the program executive officer for Navy Space Systems.

 

Workfront, a Lehi-based work management application platform company, has appointed David Burggraaf as chief technology officer. He will oversee product engineering, operations, security and IT, and serve on the company’s executive leadership team. Burggraaf has nearly 30 years of global enterprise technology experience, including 15 years in senior leadership positions at Instructure, FamilySearch and Microsoft. Before joining Workfront, Burggraaf was senior vice president of engineering at Instructure, served as senior vice president of product engineering at FamilySearch, and spent 12 years at Microsoft as an engineer and engineering leader on the Windows, BackOffice, Exchange, and Enterprise Tools product teams.

TRAVEL & TOURISM

Visit Salt Lake has appointed Devan Hamilton as national sales manager for its eastern region, responsible for booking meetings of 200-1,500 attendees originating from the East Coast. Hamilton most recently was a senior sales manager at the Hilton Salt Lake City Center, holding that position since 2015. He also worked as a sales manager and a convention services manager at the Radisson Hotel Salt Lake City Downtown. He received his bachelor’s degree in hospitality management from the University of Utah. Also, VSL and members of Salt Lake’s hospitality community recently opened a remodeled visitor center at 90 S. West Temple, Salt Lake City. The center has been re-engineered to serve visitors with information about where to go and what to do in town. The center is now paperless and uses new information kiosks. Visitors build a daily itinerary of complete descriptive information for each stop with websites and contacts, and then email their itinerary to follow along and explore. Video montages play drone footage, events, cityscapes and live social feeds. The center also has some of its original, iconic items.

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